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History of North Baddesley

Map showing North Baddesley (Badley) dated 1607
Map showing North Baddesley (Badley) dated 16

("Borrowed" from Wikipedia)

The Domesday Book of 1086 shows North Baddesley or Badeslei as it was then called (ley meaning a wood, and Baed or Baeddi being a proper name, i.e. Baeddi's Wood) as a small hamlet with a church, four farms, seven small holdings and a wood sufficient for ten hogs valued at 60 shillings (£3).

The most notable event in North Baddesley's past was the arrival in the 12th century of the Knights of St John of Jerusalem, later known as the Knights Hospitaller, and their acquisition of the overlordship rights in the late 14th century.

However, long before this, half the manor had already been transferred to the Knights as early as 1304, when the little church of All Saints was re-dedicated to St John the Baptist, the patron saint of Hospitallers.

The church was almost opposite the Hospitallers preceptory, on the site now occupied by the present manor house. The Black Death of 1348–49 resulted in the transfer of the Hospitallers Hampshire headquarters from Godsfield near New Alresford to North Baddesley.

The Knights Hospitaller were a medieval order dedicated to the care and protection of pilgrims, and tending the sick and infirm, including the crusaders in their quest to return the Holy Land to the Christian world.

A Europe-wide order, they became extremely large and wealthy landowners thanks to the patronage of rich and noble families.

The Knights Hospitaller were in Baddesley for about 400 years until 1541.

Following the Dissolution of the Monasteries they were at odds with Henry VIII, as they still recognised the supremacy of Rome and were themselves suppressed.

Their possessions were made forfeit to the crown.

After the departure of the Hospitallers the manor changed hands several times.

The Civil War of 1642–46 came and went without leaving any physical scars and there is no record of any significant happenings in Baddesley during this time.

However, the then lord of the manor, Samuel Dunch was a strong parliamentarian.

He was later related to the Cromwell family through the marriage of his son John in 1650 to Ann Major of Hursley Park, whose sister Dorothy was married to Richard Cromwell.

In 1767 the manor was bought by Thomas Dummer of Cranbury ParkOtterbourne, from whom it devolved to the Chamberlayne family.

The Joyce family bought the manor house from the Chamberlaynes in 1981 and have lived there ever since.

Baddesley gradually expanded down Nutburn Road and in 1876 the first buildings south of the crossroads were erected.

The school opened to serve both Baddesley and Chilworth, with Mr Dibble the headmaster living in the adjoining school house.

The modern village (south of Botley Road), was built on open farmland and common-land belonging formerly to the Willis Fleming family of North Stoneham Park, who were major local landowners.[3]

This is reflected in the names of local roads, Willis Avenue and Fleming Avenue.

The arrival of the 20th century was to change Baddesley forever, propelling it from a small hamlet with a population of 393 in 1901 to that of the largest village in the Test Valley.

In 2001, 100 years later, it had a population in excess of 10,000, akin to that of a small town, consisting predominantly of 1960s / 70s style small housing.

The most recent development is a new estate off Rownhams Road which was completed in 2008.

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